21 This pandemic is not just about health, it is about fear, and the objects that are singled out and then made the ground and motivation of systematic thought and action. To be afraid has become an obligation, a responsibility, a duty. People are afraid not just because of what they experience but because they are told to be afraid and encouraged to inhabit the world with fear of “foreign bodies” and “invisible enemies.”
22 Public discourse is highly moralized. Looking for someone to blame, individuals are exposed as “super-spreaders” responsible for the rising number of cases. On social media, “lockdown warriors” accuse citizens of lack of patriotism and failure to “do their duty” in the face of danger. In this highly moralized public discourse, life is considered an absolute value that can justify almost every form of disciplinary intervention in the name of health.